'It's hard to breathe:' Snap-on worker worries he has COVID-19 after case confirmed at plant

MILWAUKEE -- An employee at Snap-on‘s Milwaukee manufacturing facility tested positive for the coronavirus, a company spokesman confirmed Wednesday, March 18. Snap-on’s Milwaukee plant will remain open and operational “because of the critical nature of its work in serving essential entities of the U.S. military, auto repair garages, and transportation services,” a company spokesman said.

"My last day of work was Friday night, and I was feeling sick then," said Mark Lukszys, Snap-on employee. "You know how you get the hot, cold flashes and stuff, and all of a sudden, I was dry coughing."

Lukszys on Thursday, March 19 expressed concern he contracted COVID-19 after coming into contact with the man who tested positive.

"It's hard to breathe," said Lukszys.

Mark Lukszys


FOX6 News spoke off-camera with the infected employee, who wished to remain anonymous. He said, "I am showing no symptoms. What about all the people that have not been tested that are still working within the plant?"

Employees said approximately 325 people work at the plant.

"We share the same bathrooms, the same lunch room, the same locker room," said Lukszys.

In a statement, the Snap-on spokesman said Wednesday the infected associate’s work area was immediately cordoned off, plant personnel were informed, and all associates with direct contact with the individual were sent home and asked to follow CDC guidelines for self-quarantining. He said officials had already increased cleaning and sanitizing procedures at the facility and would continue to do so.

"If you don't come in, you don't get paid," said Lukszys.


The Snap-on spokesman noted this particular infected associate was asymptomatic but was tested after close contact with an individual outside of work who exhibited symptoms.

Union representatives were working with the company to ensure safe conditions and paid leave.